Mark Dayton previews reelection case on BuzzFeed
Upon first blush, you might think the listicle Gov. Mark Dayton wrote for BuzzFeed Community ("26 More Reasons To Love Minnesota") is nothing more than a fun little piece meant to promote our in-love-with-lists state.
But look closer and you'll see the outlines of the governor's reelection case amid much silliness about the Mall of America, white Christmases, Bob Dylan, and so forth.
Conservatives try to turn Vikings stadium into political pitfall for Dayton
With the state economy doing relatively well and the DFL accomplishing many of its goals since it took control of both branches of the Legislature following the 2012 elections, Dayton has the luxury of trumpeting his achievements instead of playing defense. Here are accomplishments he mentions specifically in his "26 Reasons" piece:
-- Dayton and the DFL got marriage equality done --
All screengrabs via BuzzFeed
-- Minnesota is ranked in the top 10 states for smarts in part because the governor helped keep tuition costs down --
-- Dayton and the DFL presided over a time when Minnesota's economy has been on the upswing --
(For more, click to page two.)
-- Dayton helped working-class Minnesotans with a minimum wage increase --
-- And finally, Minnesota is doing much better financially that it was when Dayton took office --
In bringing the BuzzFeed article to the press's attention, Dayton's campaign included this synopsis of the piece:
Over the last three and a half years, we've made huge strides in making Minnesota the kind of place where everyone is welcome and everyone has a chance to succeed. In fact, just this last legislative session, we raised the minimum wage, gave tax relief to 2 million Minnesotans and passed a bonding bill that will create nearly 30,000 good paying jobs.
With all those things working in his favor and more (after all, the Super Bowl wouldn't be coming to town if the Vikings left Minnesota because the governor wasn't able to get a stadium deal done), Dayton's Republican challengers face the prospect of making difficult arguments of this sort:
Other likely Republican lines of attack include MNsure (both because of how poorly the rollout went and in terms of its long-term financial sustainability), the Vikings stadium ( remember the e-pulltab debacle? ), Dayton's flip-flop-flip-flop bungling of the medical marijuana issue , and the perception the governor has a screw loose , among other issues. (Feel free to point out ones we've neglected to mention in the comments.)
Will it be enough to make Dayton Minnesota's first one-term governor since Jesse Ventura? Given the way things have gone the past couple years, Republicans face an uphill battle, but in purple Minnesota, anything is possible.
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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